The launch of India’s ambitious moon mission Chandrayaan-2 will be further delayed and it may not be launched any time sooner than January 2019, a top official said, according to PTI.
Chandrayaan-2, India’s second moon mission, was scheduled to be launched in October this year after a delay of over five months. The launch of Chandrayaan-2 was earlier planned in April, 2018.
The decision to delay the launch of Chandrayaan-2 was reportedly taken in wake of two major setbacks faced by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) in less than a year.
Earlier in 2018, the ISRO had lost communication with GSAT-6A, a military communication satellite days after its launch. Following this, the premier space agency was forced to recall the launch of GSAT-11 from Kourou, French Guiana for additional technical checks.
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In September 2017, ISRO’s PSLV- C39 mission, carrying the IRNSS-1H navigation satellite, failed after the heat shield refused to open and release the satellite into space.
India’s ambitious mission Chandrayaan-2 is ISRO’s first ever attempt to land a rover on the surface of the moon and the agency was treading a cautious path after the two major setbacks.
“We don’t want to take any risk,” the agency quoted the official, who wished to remain anonymous, as saying.
The rover of India’s second lunar mission, costing nearly Rs 800 crore, will be made to land near the yet-unexplored south pole of the moon. The mission is very crucial for ISRO after the successful Chandrayaan-1 and Mangalyaan (Mars Orbiter Mission).
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(With inputs from agencies)